Randle’s Status With Cowboys Proves That Some Really Are Blessed More Than Others
The last time Joseph Randle pinched himself and looked around, sure enough, this was the place – Camelot. How else could anyone explain the fantasy-like veil that protects Randle’s job security with all the dedication of a guardian angel, while he continually reinvents himself as the Dallas Cowboys’ most newsworthy running back since Emmitt Smith?
When Joseph isn’t running past enemy linebackers, he’s been trying to paddle through a deluge of news clippings. First, there was the mall robbery thing. Then those unfortunate words about a teammate’s mother, followed by his “meat-on-the-bone” remarks in reference to the departed DeMarco Murray. Oh, and something to do about a small sample of marijuana.
Finally, Cool Joe hit the headlines on Monday for what amounted to an icy exchange between he and head coach Jason Garrett after the running back fumbled at the goal-line during Sunday night’s loss to New Orleans.
For Randle, reflections upon these events have been, if not sparse, thoroughly unprofitable in the form of character reconstruction. This has left high-ranking Cowboy officials wishing that they would wake up one day to find it all just the worst part of a bad dream.
Were Randle’s chronicles of misbehavior captured over a period of weeks, or even a few months, we could chalk it up as simply a young man struggling with the pressures and responsibilities of being a starter. But, as it stands, the Cowboys now know for a fact that Randle is addicted to the roller-coaster ride of unreliability.
Randle’s mind, much like his running of late, does flip-flops on a regular basis. One moment he’s a good soldier, while the next finds him in desperate need of psycho analysis. In the first quarter he runs for 90 yards, while he can only manage -3 yards over the next three quarters.
In addition to his starter’s tag, the Cowboys have also awarded him with the duties of the goal-line running back. Before this past week’s game, coaches placed a new restriction upon Randle while in this role.
After seeing him leap awkwardly over the pile for a touchdown versus Atlanta, offensive coordinator Scott Linehan ordered him to restrain from any such impulses at a later date. Randle said, “Yes sir,” and that was that.
So it was in good faith that Linehan called Randle’s number in the second quarter against the Saints with the ball on the 1-yard line. Randle rewarded his coach’s confidence by doing what we all should have expected him to do – leap, reach…and fumble.
Only video replays showing the ball to have just crossed the goal-line before Randle lost control of it saved the Cowboys from a turnover, and a total disaster.
In the process, Randle added five more minutes of fame to his resume, and a tete-a-tete on the sideline with head coach Jason Garrett, who appeared to be offering some colorful discouragement to his player. Randle’s response on this occasion was something less contrite than a mere “Yes sir,” prompting Garrett to re-emphasize his message a few moments later near the bench.
Not even this latest incident could break the silver thread that keeps Randle on the roster. On Tuesday, during his weekly radio monologue, team owner Jerry Jones said the team would not demote or cut a player because of one mistake.
But who in Camelot keeps count of one’s sins anyway? Not King Jerry, that’s all too evident. And if the scepter-wielder chooses to turn a deaf ear and a blind eye to what outsiders may deem to be a problem child, then so be it.
Even in Camelot, there are ways to endure while living dangerously. Joseph Randle has found such a formula. Based upon his current standing on the depth chart, Randle is not only enduring, but thriving.
For some, security is so real as to seem a fantasy to others.